My family loves two things unconditionally: hanging out with each other, and watching movies. So, when my family descends on New York City for Christmas and New Year's Eve, we do a lot of both. This weekend, we watched Pitch Perfect (along with a variety of other films), a film about growing up, college, and a cappella singing competitions (natch). It was produced and spearheaded by Elizabeth Banks, who we here at Tableau Your Mind love so very much.
Since my parents were engaging in spirited debate after the movie, I thought I would share the conversation that followed between them. For the record, I really like this movie. I think that there are some tonal problems, but overall I was completely charmed by it. Here are my parents thoughts:
Mom: I loved it. Other teenage movies are so juvenile. This one doesn't feel as teenage-y. It's a a little more adult. The premise is not so different than other movies; it follows the same beats. I enjoyed the girls. I enjoyed all the girls. Fat Amy (Rebel Wilson) - I like the way she used her body. She puts herself out there, makes her body part of the comedy. She's comfortable in her body, she's not self-conscious. She's hilarious.
Dad: Overall I did not like the movie. I like the singing - top notch.
Mom: I loved the songs. You said you have the soundtrack? I want that.
Dad: But you don't know who the market they were playing to. At first I thought it would be a family movie, but then I thought it was trying to be crude and crass, like, what's that movie? Bumped up? Knocked up! They missed out on the family audience with all the sex and the dicks, and it's not funny enough for people that like that kind of sophomoric and obvious humor. It's a poorly designed movie. The plot was just sort of thrown together. The only character development was with the magician character (Ben Platt).
Mom: I quite liked the magician.
Dad: He was the best developed of all the male parts, which was unfortunate, since he was such a small part. Still, it was nice that they worked on his character, because it came around and was important later. But the guy in the club that had to leave (Adam DeVine)? It didn't make any sense. They could have gotten someone else.
Dad: Seriously, who would you buy this movie for? Funny-wise, it wasn't that funny; family-wise, it wasn't right for the family. Dancing and singing-wise, it was beautiful, but everything else fell apart. It felt like a bunch of people throwing something together over the weekend. Plus, so much of the movie hinged on whether the audience has seen The Breakfast Club. If you haven't seen it, Beca's (Anna Kendrick) character change doesn't really make sense.
Mom: For a senior citizen like him, it doesn't work.
Dad: You want her to be involved in The Breakfast Club. I don't know the ending, I don't know what she's reacting to. There are too many leaps.
Mom: That would be showing too much. They have to focus on the real movie, not the movie within the movie. Even of you haven't seen the movie, you can tell that it's a powerful ending.
Dad: It just didn't work for me.
Dad: Hated it
Mom: Liked it